KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade led to tension outside a Planned Parenthood office in Overland Park, Kansas, on Friday.
Planned Parenthood Great Plains officials held a press conference following the ruling and said they’ve been preparing their staff for this day even before the leaked Supreme Court draft opinion was released in May.
In the press conference, the officials spoke about why they believe the decision will have a long-lasting impact on women’s health care.
“By having a situation for people to go through pregnancies by not allowing access to abortion care will likely have devastating impacts on people and their communities,” explained Dr. Iman Alsaden with Planned Parenthood Great Plains.
Planned Parenthood Great Plains oversees care in Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma and Arkansas. Each state will be affected differently.
In Missouri, abortion was already limited. Friday, the state enacted its trigger law, becoming the first to ban abortions.
In Kansas, abortion is still legal. Voters will get to decide on abortion rights in the Aug. 2 election, but in the meantime, Planned Parenthood fears the Sunflower State’s four abortion clinics won’t be able to keep up.
“We anticipate that we will have more patients than we can serve who need care we can provide. We are going to do what we can to serve as a point of care to patients who can get to us,” said Emily Wales, president and CEO at Planned Parenthood Great Plains.
Advice & Aid Pregnancy Center encourages life and doesn’t offer services for abortion. However, the center supports women with whatever pregnancy option they choose.
Ruth Tisdale, executive director at Advice & Aid Pregnancy Center, expects demand for their services to increase.
“We are going to do what we do on a regular basis, the only change is that we may see an increase in the number of women we see in our doors,” Tisdale said.
As for what’s next, Planned Parenthood said this decision could lead to women seeking unsafe abortion practices.
“It’s a moment we worry about the future because we know abortion bans mean bad health outcomes for people who get pregnant if they don’t have access to high-quality critical essential health services,” Wales said.